She could have shut the door–said the words–I’m tired. Go away. I can’t do this anymore. Not today.

But Rahab the Harlot, a woman included in Jesus’ family tree, she didn’t close the door. She did the opposite–she opened it wide.

What if Rahab had specifically prayed these words–God, please send the kindness of two godly men to my door. Make them different, so I will know they have been sent by you. Rescue me Lord, out of this wicked city—out of my personal darkness. Rescue my mother, my father, my family. Protect my family God, like you did the children of Israel.

Consider this–what if Rahab had prayed day and night this prayer long before the soldiers knocked on her door? Her prayers may have included the asking of the desires of her heart–be a mama–a wife–to be loved.

She knew of His power. She knew of His strength. She knew of His wrath. And she knew of His protection and rescue for the children of Israel.

God’s messengers, they came. And Rahab, she hid the spies and because of her kindness, her belief–her holding on–she and the soldiers made a covenant.

Joshua 2:11-13–And as soon as we had heard these things, our hearts did melt, neither did there remain any more courage in any man, because of you: for the Lord your God, he is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath. Now therefore, I pray you, swear unto me by the Lord, since I have shewed you kindness, that ye will also shew kindness unto my father’s house, and give me a true token: And that ye will save alive my father, and my mother, and my brethren, and my sisters, and all that they have, and deliver our lives from death.

Joshua 2:18–Behold, when we come into the land, thou shalt bind this line of scarlet thread in the window which thou didst let us down by: and thou shalt bring thy father, and thy mother, and thy brethren, and all thy father’s household, home unto thee.

Joshua 2:21– And she said, According unto your words, so be it. And she sent them away, and they departed: and she bound the scarlet line in the window.

And she waited for their return. And it wasn’t just a few hours she waited. It was days–maybe even weeks.

And God through the obedience of Joshua–this time when the soldiers came knocking on Rahab’s door, it wasn’t just two men God sent. The Bible says, “about forty-thousand”. Forty-thousand!!

Can you imagine the heartbeat of Rahab when she saw the forty-thousand coming toward Jericho–hearing the marching of their footsteps? Their voices silent.

Joshua 4:13–About forty-thousand prepared for war passed over before the Lord unto battle, to the plains of Jericho.

Joshua 6:17–And the city shall be accursed, even it, and all that are therein, to the Lord: only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all that are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers we sent.

Joshua 6:26–And Joshua saved Rahab the harlot alive, and her father’s household, and all that she had; and she dwelleth in Israel even unto this day: because she hid the messengers, which Joshua sent to spy out Jericho.

There are days when we ask ourselves, can we make it another day? And why, why are we holding on? What will tomorrow look like? Will tomorrow even come? Riots, disrespect of leaders and law enforcement, the lack of kindness–the lack of unity, the hurting of children, women, men, financial problems, cancer, the Covid virus, death……

When our lives feel like a tornado spinning, taking us down into a deep, dark hole….when we can’t take another tragedy…another senseless death…another breaking news report….when troubles seem to overwhelm our hearts, cloud our minds—

We need to ask ourselves, just who are we holding on to?

Are we placing our confidence and hope in elected officials more than God?

Rahab’s assurance in her family’s safety–her rescue, it was not determined by her faith in the red rope that swayed outside her window, nor in the messengers’ promises or even in God’s servant, Joshua. She held on to her only hope, the one the blood red rope represented, and that was God.

Titus 2:13—Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ

61 Days

I’ve heard it said, ‘I can’t wait until 2020 is over. Done.’

But how is it we wish our days away when every precious moment of life is an undeserved gift?

October is ending tomorrow. The calendar turns one more page and sixty-one days remain in the year 2020.

It’s been a hard year.

2020 will be written in history as the year of the pandemic.  The year of the quarantine. The year of COVID. The year when our church doors closed.  The year our schools and businesses closed. The year where our loved ones were in hospitals and nursing homes alone—and there, many died alone. The year where kindness seemed almost foreign and the year where the problems of this divided nation could not be discussed in a civil manner, but where people went straight for the juggler in hatred and criticism. 

 The year 2020 will also be remembered as one where families spent more time together.  Children played outside more.  Teachers taught in empty classrooms. And it was a year where parents and grandparents gained a whole new respect for their children’s teachers and when a high school student said, ‘I hate this mask. But if I get to come to school, I will gladly wear it.’  

Many worked from home and meetings were held virtually. People planted more gardens–preserved more food.  We watched church services on computer screens and children and adults were still giving their hearts to Jesus. And His kingdom grew in numbers. Our essential workers, they worked tirelessly serving others. Our healthcare–nurses and doctors–tired and overworked—they not only served and worked as health care workers—they became family to their patients.

Sixty-one days.

So how is it we plan to spend the last sixty-one days of this hard, crazy, heartbreaking, sometimes overwhelming year of 2020? 

We have a choice, you know. And no, not one of us is promised the breath of another moment–another day. But that doesn’t mean we don’t plan for tomorrows.

Are we going to lean in closer to His grace and mercy–count our blessings? Love one another deeper? Pray more? Listen more than we speak? Live together more united than divided? Give more? Be the hands and feet of Jesus more?

November 1st–the last sixty-one days of 2020 begins. And what if we could give thanks TOGETHER. What if everyday when we wake to another sunrise, we thank God for another day. What if everyday we take more time to notice. What if everyday we take more time to say hello and smile through masks. What if everyday we intentionally look for ways where we can give more. What if everyday before our eyes close in sleep, we reach for a pen and paper and write down three things or more that we are thankful for. And what if in the next 61 days we reach more for His word, rather than for our remotes and cell phones.

For sixty-one days. What if?

What if we could all just join hearts, and give thanks, TOGETHER.

If you would like a free download of the Let’s Give Thanks TOGETHER, please email abeautifulgraceco@gmail.com

The writing spider

There’s this writing spider, she’s known as a “common garden” spider and she has taken up residence in my flower garden. Now, please keep reading because like many of you–I don’t like spiders either. I’m the one who found a large water spider in my closet–the size and resemblance of a tarantula. And in my panic and infinite wisdom, I ran and got the bug spray and drenched the spider with the poison until it fell to the floor. And me, feeling much relieved looked around and my clothes–every piece of clothing in my closet had to be removed, washed, and the closet aired out. It took days.

Over the years the daisy mum has grown almost to the size of a bush rather than a flower–stems large and the bush, so weighted that it split to the point of making this wide ugly hole in the flower garden. My plans were to cut the flower down even before it bloomed but the rains came and the blooms, well, I decided to wait until the cold set in.

One day I was out in my flower garden I noticed a spider had spun its web in the hole like a bridge joining and pulling the oversized bush of daisies back together. And I remembered a few years ago a good friend of mine told me the spider was called a writing spider–harmless she said. So I did some more research and it turns out there is nothing “common” about this garden spider and I would later learn the writing spider who made a home among my daisies has a story all her own.

Writing spiders are orb-weavers and they spin their webs from the softness of silk that is said to be strong and more pliable than steel. Their webs are beautiful, very detailed, formed in circular formations, and have zig-zag patterns. And they make their homes in places where they will not be disturbed, where they can find rest.

I have been watching her for several weeks now from a distance standing afar through the lens of my camera. And one afternoon I noticed the spider has lost two of her legs on one side of her body since she first came to the garden. But what I saw even more surprising was this–on her back are two of the tiniest of hearts. And God, only He can create a creature as small as a spider and adorn its back with the yellowest of hearts.

At first glance, from a distance we only see a small portion of someone’s story or think what we see–and there we are often quick to judge and tear down. But when we take the time to lean in close with less judgment and more compassion and kindness, we may just be amazed of what we will learn about another’s story, and of ourselves.

And the writing spider, she’s still in the garden and research says her egg sack she has carefully woven and protected, very few of the eggs have a chance of surviving to adulthood. She, herself was one of those predictions–a slim chance of survival–and here she is fighting against the odds for her children. And no matter how broken she may seem, the “common” spider with the two yellow hearts on her back–made by God–she’s weathering the storms, writing her story among the daisies.

tHE Porch Rocker

The colors kept peeling–grain by grain as the tiny sander hummed the only song it knows how to sing. The colors–the darkest of scarlet, ocean blue, and white.

This old rocking chair, it’s been in my family for years, a staple on the small front porch at my Grandparents’ home. The plan for the rocking chair on this day–a sanding of the old away and a fresh coat of paint–black to match the porch railing–black to compliment the new beehive yellow paint on the doors.

And the more the sander sang, layers of stories ingrained in that old rocker fell to the concrete–dust particles of memories covered the floor of a garage where I used to ride my bicycle as a child–hours upon hours, round and round, and me, singing Jesus loves me.

Brand new the rocking chair was red and I really don’t know whether my Grandpa Lackey bought the rocker or if it was a gift from someone. It was always on the porch for anyone who wanted to sit for a spell. And several years ago, the week I laid on the couch sick from anemia, my Daddy decided the old rocker needed a new paint job. It’s funny now as I look back on that week. I do believe Daddy and Mama thought I was near death–Mama went to her sewing machine, creating a new bed covering with ruffles with the smallest of blue flowers for me. And Daddy, painting the rocking chair white.

My Grandma Lackey, she had these cherry trees planted in the back yard and every season she fought tooth and nail with the birds for enough cherries to make one pie–just one pie was all she wanted. And she would hang rubber hoses in the tree, disguised them as snakes, hung aluminum pie pans among the limbs and there was this one time my AM/FM red battery operated radio went to missing. And there it was among the ripening cherries and the birds–music blaring as loud as that old radio would play–trying to scare the birds away.

Grandma hadn’t been out of the hospital long and she wanted to check on her cherries so she and myself, my children–her great grandchildren, my Mama, and our neighbor walked with her to see her beloved trees–her body still frail and weak. And my neighbor said, ‘I just don’t think Ruby’s going to pull out of this, do you?’, talking to my Mom. And I was so hurt and angry at her–her words cruel at the time, I thought. Words my heart didn’t want to hear.

The following month my Grandma passed away.

The Sunday after my Grandma’s funeral I saw my Grandpa sitting on the front porch–all alone in the red rocker. And I went to sit with him for a while. I asked him if he wanted to go into the house and rest and he said no. He was going to sit there. All day. He was expecting company, he said. Family and friends. No one ever came that day.

And the last color on the rocker, painted several years ago–ocean blue. The color was to be a reminder of the vibrant blues of the ocean and change. The roar of the waves–the sun glistening on the water, God’s breath in the winds, His mighty creation. Every time I experience this peace, this beauty, it changes me. Every. Single. Time.

It’s funny how simple things such as colors woven in an old piece of furniture can jolt memories–some hard to remember and some you never want to forget.

And the porch rocker–there won’t be any covering of the memories with black paint or any other color. Not today.

BRAVE fAITH–yOUNG HEARTS

He was sitting at home in front of a screen on this Sabbath morning as many of us have done over the past six months—listening to the message–God’s word. The pastor was reading from the book of Luke and the verse, Settle it therefore in your hearts, not to meditate before what ye shall answer. (Luke 21:14).  And he preached on the need to settle in our hearts—commit to the Lord and since the pandemic many young people had decided to settle it in their hearts.

Midway through the service  the church doors opened and this young man,  he walked straight up to the altar.  He didn’t wait on an altar call—he knew in his heart the one who was calling him and he couldn’t wait any longer.  And he bowed on his knees—asking God for forgiveness and Jesus, into his heart.   And right there, he settled it.  The Lord and him. 

She was listening with her Mama–Wednesday evening service.  Little ears hearing the message of the gospel preached so much so a child could understand.  Quietly she went into another room by herself, got down on knees–knees barely five-years old and asked Jesus to come into her heart. And once the church doors opened again she sat on the steps of the altar alongside her pastor and he read her God’s Holy scriptures about salvation–forgiveness. And once again, she said the words, I am saved and shared she wanted to be baptized. 

The message on my phone read, ‘My daughter wanted me to tell you, she got saved tonight.’ And I could only imagine her seven-year-old smile and the scene where she asked her Mama more questions and then bowed with her Grandpa and prayed.  And she too accepted Jesus into her heart during the time services were cancelled. 

He wiped tender tears from his cheeks and his step-Dad placed a gentle hand on his back and they walked back into the church after Sunday service had long ended.  Our pastor, this boy and his step-Dad sitting on the altar–settling it in his young heart. And the altar, it is always open.  

And last Sunday our pastor shared with us another young person in our congregation gave their heart to Jesus. His church–the doors are never closed.  

Right in the middle of what seems to be a forever pandemic. And five young people give their hearts to Jesus–trusting in Him with childlike faith.  Long before COVID closed our sanctuaries, Sunday School classroom chairs sat empty–there were roots planted.  Deep plantings in these children’s hearts in sacred places–in the sanctuary–the Sunday School classroom– homes, and yes, even in schools.   

I met with her on a summer day–6 feet apart with masks covering our smiles.  She’s registering for her first year of college.  And she’s excited. Her plans are to study to become a teacher and make a difference in the lives of children.  We planned her schedule, talked about future plans and said our good-byes.  

My office phone rang just shortly after that and it was her– the same young lady who shares the name of a woman in the Old Testament whose bravery helped King David fight against the enemy.  

She said, ‘After I left school, God laid it on my heart to pray for you, pray over you, Ms. Miller.  Is it okay if I pray for you now?’ And there over the phone lines she asked God to keep me safe and the students safe during our meetings and continued blessings for the upcoming school year.

Our young people–they are doing hard things.  They are doing brave things.  And they are listening to the call of obedience.  God–He is calling some mighty warriors in the next generation and we as adults need to take notice.  The church will only be as strong as the body of believers are united.  And our young people–they are leading the way.   

Romans 10:17, So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Photos by Jill Miller Woodie

The leaf slowly fell at her feet.  She held it up to the night sky and it glared back like the shine of a full moon.  The leaf—half alive, half dead.  Crumbling into bits.  Withering away–in what seem to be a slow death from the living.

And the bird still sings in the dark.

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The road to Bethlehem was well-trodden and Naomi and Ruth’s footprints were deeply carved into the soil long before Mary and Joseph made their journey. Two women who were withering away in their own sorrows–Naomi with the death of her husband and two sons, and her daughter-in-law Ruth grieving the loss of her husband, Naomi’s son.

Their family–broken.

Naomi with a shattered heart said to her daughters-in-law Orpah and Ruth, I’m going back to the land of Judah. I have nothing more to give.  No sons.  Nothing.  Go and return to your homeland, your mothers’ home.  God has punished me.

Through weeping of tears and mourning they embraced one another and Naomi prayed for her sons’ wives, The Lord dealt kindly with you. The Lord grant you that ye may find rest, each of you in the house of her husband. (Ruth 1:8-9).

And Orpah, she gave her mother-in-law one last kiss—turned and walked away.

Ruth, the Bible says she “clave” to her mother-in-law.  The Greek translation of clave is cling–bonded together—literally like glue.  And Naomi acknowledged that Orpah was returning to her people, her god and encouraged Ruth to do the same.  Ruth was not taking no for an answer.  She was going with Naomi. She was going with God.

“Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God: Where thou diest, will I die and there will I be buried: the Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.” (Ruth 1:16-17)

And at that moment they both said yes, their lives began to change.

Broken Wings

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The Bible gives us very little details of Naomi and Ruth’s lives prior to their leaving Moab.  Did Elimelch, Naomi’s husband die of old age, sickness?  What about Naomi’s sons—Mahlon and Chilion? Did they die of sickness, a tragic accident?  Again, the Bible gives us very little of their story.  The scriptures does tell us that Ruth and Orpah were women of Moab—a people who worshipped a pagan god.

Ten years can seem like forever to a child, but to an adult, ten years is like the flickering of a burnt candle—one minute it’s lit, glowing with a flame and then with a whisper of breath—gone.  Ten years was the length of time Ruth was a part of Naomi’s family.  And it was enough.  It was enough time to learn of God’s goodness and grace—His comfort.

So they two went until they came to Bethlehem. Ruth 1:19.

As soon as Naomi and her Moabitess daughter-in-law entered into the city of Bethlehem, people began to talk, question, Is this Naomi? (Ruth 1:19)

Naomi heard their murmurings and answered, Call me not Naomi, call Mara: for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me.  I went out full, and the Lord hath bought me home again empty: why then call ye me Naomi, seeing the Lord hath testified against me, and the Almighty hath afflicted me?  Ruth 1:20-21.

Naomi who was drowning in her sadness changed her name to Mara meaning bitter in the Hebrew language. And Ruth, she was humbly clinging to the hope of the Light despite the hardness of her past–despite the unknown of her tomorrows.  And there was God in the midst, leading them both to one of their greatest blessings.

Follow a Beautiful Grace to read more of the Women of the Bible Series in the coming weeks–Wednesdays with the Women of the Bible 

Naomi and Ruth, Part II, Gleaning the Harvest

 

 

The top of the page reads May 02, 2020.  Saturday. Day 168.

Dear God.

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Life sure has changed a lot since day one when I  promised to write daily in my prayer journal for 30 days.  It was sometime in November.  I had this prayer request on my mind and wanted to make sure God was leading me or if it was me leading myself–which is never good without Him.

I told myself I would pray for 30 days diligently for this request, writing in my prayer journal and then after those days passed if I felt like God was leading me then I would take the next step.

Thirty days has turned into 168 days.  Twelve days shy of six months.  Twelve days short of a half of a year.  And I’m still penning my prayers to God.  But the thing is my prayer request–the 30-day focus–God are you leading me in this direction? My prayers are much different now.  I still pray for direction on this matter–not daily– it’s not the focus of writing in my prayer journal anymore.

We often think our prayers are meant only for our requests–for asking. I have come to learn pouring our hearts out to God in prayer–in conversation, whether on our knees, writing in a journal, praying while in the car, sitting quietly on the front porch, in a prayer closet–yes, it is about asking God for direction and lifting others for healing and help. But the privilege of prayer is so much more. It’s that one-on-one conversation with the One who gives us breath.  And it’s a privilege and grace to go to His throne. For friendship. For guidance. For comfort. For healing.  And to thank Him.

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Red birdhouse

Dear God, It’s been a tough day.  And I know you already know that.

Dear God, The stress has been a little overwhelming today. And then I walk out to the garden You gave me–get my hands dirty and then I remember all the good of the day–the blessings.

Dear God, Today has been a good day.  Thank you for answered prayers. God, I’m going to write my prayer a little different tonight.  Here’s a list, God of all of the blessings I received today.  Because of You.

Dear God, Today I have allowed tension for some reason to steal my joy in You.  I don’t understand why.  Please forgive me.

Dear God, Thank you for another Sabbath.  It was different today, God.  Sitting at my kitchen table watching our church’s faithful pastor deliver a message by the way of a screen rather than from the pulpit.  And hearing the pastor’s wife using the gift of her voice and song to lift up your name.  It’s still hard God not to cry.  From the missing of worshipping in your house.

White blossoms

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The days on our calendars look much different than the plans we had just a few months ago.  The plans we made–some have been changed.  Some erased–not meant to be. And with this has come fears, frustration, tears, feelings of loss, struggles.  And hope and good and healing and grace and mercy.

And this morning outside my window, a bluebird is perched on the Shepherd’s hook–his coat of blue shining in the morning sun.  God’s beauty has not changed and neither has His love. Pray. Talk with Him. Cry to Him. Praise Him. He’s listening.

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Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.

Psalm 143:8 (KJV)

I’ve been wanting to share her story for a while.  About her infectious laugh, that she loved flowers—made her living as a farm woman—mother to ten children, eight girls and two boys—widowed at the young age of 44—a woman of great faith—and how she was always the one who had to clean the dirty eggs.

My Granny Rhodes, I always called her that, even after she remarried.  And she didn’t mind, coming from her first granddaughter—nor did my loving step-grandfather, Burton.

Granny Rhodes

Mamie Rhodes England

And here in the pause of this time in our lives—there it was stored in an old box—treasure boxes I call them—full of photos and notes and cards—there, a copy in her own handwriting—a part of her life and there at the top of the page she had written July 25, the day her second baby boy was born and the title of her story—A Wonderful Dream.

“I don’t know where you can read this but I have tried to write it down the best I could I wish I could tell it as real as it was. I thought I had not seen Louise (oldest daughter) in a long time I did not know where I had been but we all was going to heaven together.  I don’t believe time is going to stand long.  I just wanted to write this all down.  Hope you won’t think I am crazy but it is real to me.”

You see, my Granny Rhodes wrote about a dream she had while sedated in childbirth.  Maybe she thought she was dying rather than living.  And then again, perhaps God was preparing a blessing, a message for all of us—for generations to come.

The story goes the doctors and nurses said she was one of the happiest women they had ever seen giving childbirth.  Now keep in mind this was her eighth time birthing a baby.

“I dreamed the end of time it came the very minute my baby was born and I was going in the gates of heaven and Louise, she was there at this place where my baby was born and she didn’t know it was her Mother coming thru. I told her I was going into heaven and I asked her if she was ready to for her to just give me her hand and she did.  And she was crying too”

Will Luffman preached at the church where my Grandpa Rhodes and Grandma Rhodes worshipped—Bethel Baptist Church.  In the year 1952 on July 25th—his words over 68 years ago in my Grandma’s dream is a message much needed today. Read them slow.

and I thought Will Luffman was preaching and I didn’t know anything he said but he said, ‘hurry up, the Lord is here. He has stopped the world long enough for him to get everything just right.  That they was going to be another world and he wanted this to show to the people to prove that there was a Lord and Will Luffman was saying, ‘hurry and the children is at the gates waiting”

And I can only imagine on this day the blessing the nurses and doctor received as they stood close to my Grandma’s bedside.

I was trying to shout and they wouldn’t let me but I didn’t know who was trying to keep (me) from shouting.  I was so happy.  I was saying how happy I’ll be, over and over and I had somebody by the hand and I was saying God bless you and she had tears in her eyes and she said you had a dream, didn’t you?

“I said it was wonderful then and something said never doubt the Lord is with you now.  I don’t believe I could ever be that happy any more and live. I wish I could tell it as real as it was. I have tried to tell it lots of times but it makes me so happy I can’t tell it all at one time.”

My Granny Rhodes, she saw Jesus on that day. And He knew what her tomorrows would hold—ten years later. He knew she would need to know her purpose and He knew she would need to cling to Him, the dream He gave her, and the vision of Heaven.

“It was wonderful just getting to the gates and knowing all of your family was going in too.  I can even see all as he was standing there and his face just shined. I don’t know where I said all of this or not but it is as real as it ever was to me.  If it wasn’t the Lord nobody will ever make me doubt it.  And this same voice said you will be one of the happiest family (ies) in heaven.  This is just wonderful for me to think about.  Will Luffman has made me think of this dream more than one time when he was preaching.  I never could tell all this to all of my family for crying and there wasn’t but one thing sad about it.  It was waking up and seeing it wasn’t true. I believe the Lord left me for my children.  I could say more about this and how happy I have been, but it makes me feel good to write it down.”

On March 3, 1962, my Grandpa Rhodes passed away at the young age of 46, an apparent heart attack and my Granny Rhodes, left a widower with the sole responsibility of the day-to-day operations of their poultry farm and raising her six young children still at home.

Grandpa Rhodes and Granny Rhodes

Otto Rhodes and Mamie Rhodes, Grandpa Rhodes and Granny Rhodes

One of her daughters recalls her talking about her dream, “I remember Mama talking about this dream to me.  She described the gates being made from pearls.  Not many pearls but each gate was carved out of one solid pearl.  Mom also said that the gates did not swing out like a garden gate, but fell down at her feet.”

And on the pages in my Granny Rhodes England’s original notebook were the colors of age and yellowing and her words penned in ink,

“Just signed it today, April 22. Everytime I think about this dream it makes me feel good and every time I read it.  I hope someone finds it some day.” 

Mamie Rhodes England

April 22, 1987

And after all these years, thirty-three years later, I found your dream again, Granny Rhodes. Your story.  And I have shared it with many.  For such a time as this.

The letter

Granny Rhodes and Burton

Step-Grandpa Burton England & Granny Rhodes England

 

 

 

He wraps the nails with the smallest of wires as tight as crippled hands will allow into the form of the cross of his Savior. Five hours for one cross and he wants everyone in our church to have his gift to give.

He said he made something for me as he struggled, reaching into his shirt pocket with his much too young crippling hand.  I carved this angel for you out of cedar, he said. You might can hang it in your closet. It’s not much. My hands doesn’t work so well anymore. 

And this Christmas his wife gave me a gift from him and her.  She said, he doesn’t sleep much and when he can’t sleep he carves. She said sometimes he stays up all night and carves.  And she handed me the most beautiful of snowflakes carved out of cedar–by his crippled hands. 

And I, humbled, do not deserve such beautiful gifts.

The most special of gifts wrapped in a pretty box adorned with a bow will never compared to those of love made with crippled hands and a giving heart.

Psalm 5:8, Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.

Bobbys Gifts

 

All scripture references are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible and photos and writings are copyright of a beautful grace.

And on this Sunday morning my pastor said, “We can’t do things for God half-heartedly.” His message from God hit hard–crushing hard on my own heart.

How many times do we give God our least. How often do we give God what is left of our time rather than the best of our time. How is it we find the moments to share about everything of this world, but don’t have the time to share His goodness. And how is we give God only a small portion, when He gave us His all. His Son–His everything.

Daniel's Design

Psalm 9:1, I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works.

#rendyourheart #fourthdayoffebruary #ourwholeheart #Godisgood #Godislove

(I am very humbled to share one of my son’s designs in this post. He is a gift and I am blessed. Thank you, Daniel Miller.
And thank you Pastor Rodney Blake for your God-sent messages. You and Diane Blake are a gift to our church and to many others.)

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